My Blog, My Pride

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On March 9, 2015 I shall complete six years of blogging. Six whole years of writing almost everything that happened in my life and almost everything that came to my mind. Writing started off with the hope of healing my broken heart and venting out my frustrations. Later it became all about poetry and fiction. And when I found love again, it became a happy space that held every account of my life. Today, this space has become my companion in every walk of life. Be it a rant, a poem or a piece of fiction, it always will be a piece of my heart. Yes, some of it might be a filament of my imagination but still it is linked to me in more ways that one. The Honest Posts series is my love story out in the open, right from day one. Some people tell me not to share too much of personal information on the blog. But when there is a Facebook and a Twitter having almost every detail of our daily life, why not a blog? And moreover it is a personal choice as to what I share. I have nothing to hide and I do not mind letting the world know what I am up to. And that is why almost every post of mine reeks of the bitter truth and exactly why there is a whole sect of people who hate my blog and me. It does not bother me. They make me feel successful.

Something grand is going to come up here for the sixth anniversary, and more on the blog and its journey then. But for now, I'm writing this to celebrate the 4 Lakh plus views on my blog. I still remember the day my blog reached a 100 views and ten followers. I was so excited and thrilled back then. Now with 4 Lakh views and 300 odd followers, the excitement still remains but one thing has changed. I don't rely on these stats alone to make myself feel good. I know I have a bunch of loyal followers who come to read my blog no matter what is written. What I want to write, is not decided by the number of comments or likes on my posts. It is just what I want to do. I don't plan a post. When I sit to write something I write whatever comes to my mind. Be it a story or a poem. Thankfully I'm blessed with some decent writing skills that keep me going.

Writing about my personal life and the people in it is my choice and I have never regretted any post that I have written. Be it about whomever. I write about how that person or scenario affected my life and I write the whole truth. Over my journey of writing I have realized that people have problems in accepting the truth. They would rather live in denial and escape the obvious. But when someone else chooses to talk out the truth and then it becomes blasphemy. I do not care. I'm normally a calm person with various interests and I'm best left to myself. But when someone, be it anyone, comes and disturbs me in my lair I would not take it lying down. Tit for tat is my only mantra and I'm more than happy to show people their real faces. No matter how ugly it is. There are a set of people who think that I'm washing dirty linen in public. But why shouldn't I, when the linen was dirtied in public as well. You get my point?

Cal and I will be moving into a place of our own next week. All the products that I purchased for my kitchen, came from the earnings that I earned via my blog. From the vouchers and the cash prices. I did not have to shell out a single extra penny. Cal felt so proud when he pointed that out to me. From a mixer, to a chopper, to the utensils and the storage products all of it are courtesy my writing. One of my stories is soon going to be published in an anthology and this would be my first ever piece on print. Of course I have had a lot of articles published in various other sites, but this is the first time I will hold a book in my hand which has my story in it. Proud would be an understatement as to what I am feeling now. Blogging has given me so much of recognition. When I started off I did not expect any of this thing to happen. But now when I look back at how far I have come I feel so happy and thrilled.

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I have made so many wonderful friends on the blogosphere and I know that they will watch my back no matter what. And I'm on their side always too. I have met some of them in person and they have remained my closest friends till date. Its remarkable you know, when you meet someone via a blog and then realize how much you share in common, forming the perfect base for a long friendship. We might not talk everyday, but thanks to each other's blog we know what exactly is happening in their lives. And somehow I feel proud about being a part of it. Writing has given me a lot of monetary benefits, I cannot deny that. But more importantly it has shown me what I can do. Writing is something that I stumbled upon accidentally, but the benefits that I reaped from it personally is way too much. It gives me so much satisfaction when I give life to the words in my mind. It gives me clarity as I vent out my frustration. It gives me happiness as I write a good poem. All these emotions are related and yet so diverse. Just like all the thoughts in this chaotic head of mine.

No matter who tells what, I'm not going to stop writing whatever I feel. If you have behaved good with me, then you will appear good here. If you have caused me trouble then that is exactly how you will appear on my post. What is to hide? You know what happened, I know what happened. You talk about it behind my back, I write about it here. You chose to hide the truth, I like to bring out the truth. Especially if you have rubbed me the wrong way. If what I have written is false or made up, then you have all the right to lash back. But when I have written what actually happened, then I see no harm in it. But people know that I write only the truth. If it is a lie, no one would relate to it. Since it is the truth, people know who it is. And I shall go out of my way to make sure they do. Yes, I have lost out on a lot of friends because of this and I honestly don't care. They should have behaved well, if they did not want to be shown here in poor light. If you are reading this, you can feel free to open a blog of your own and write whatever that you want against me. Believe me, I'd love to read it myself.

Not everyone can digest the truth. People do everything behind closed doors and appear like a saint in public. But I am not like that. Whatever I am, I am in the open. Whatever I do, I do it in the open. And I'm very proud of myself for that. I'm a mortal human, who has her flaws. I have no qualms in accepting it and moving on. Just because I do not write something, doesn't mean that it doesn't exist right? People vent out their anger and frustrations in different ways. I do it by writing. If you have a problem with it, deal with it. All these rants, chaos and thoughts of mine have got me here today and I'm so happy to be here. Nothing, absolutely nothing has made me feel this happy and content before. And I take major pride as I count the people who love my work as well as the people who hate it. Like someone rightly said, 'You cannot get to the top, without making a few enemies'. 

Well, I'm halfway through atleast.

Going Sleek!

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I'm a multitasker who is constantly on the go. I call my mind organised chaos as I always have a million things to do. I want to work and at the same time write. I want to dance and at the same time paint. I want to listen to music and at the same time make a planner. I always have a hundred things running on my mind and I find that this keeps me active and energized. I'm not a very big fan of tablets or phone pads. I find it really difficult to type on touch screens. I need a chic and sleek technology partner by my side, to enable and empower the multitasker in me. Since more than half of Bangalore is Wi-fi enabled now, all I need is an amazing device that I can carry around in my bag and connect anywhere. It needs to be light and yet powerful. And most importantly, it should come at a decent price and be worth it.

I had it narrowed down to two choices. The sleek and powerful ASUS EeeBook X205TA or the ultra-portable and perpetually connected ASUS All In One PC ET2040. Based on the requirements of my lifestyle, the ASUS EeeBook X205TA is my choice. To start off with, it looks so chic and classy. Available in four vibrant colors; dark blue, red, gold and white, the Eeebook definitely looks outstanding and sophisticated. The red one is my choice, as it would go with almost every outfit of mine and looks powerful. With a screen size of 29.4 cms, it weighs less than a kilo gram and fits in perfectly in any tote of mine. The best part is, it is super sleek and really light. The light weight makes it the dream gadget for on the go computing. Measuring a thickness of only 1.75 cm, this EeeBook is almost as thin as your phone and you can carry it around like you are carrying a tablet. It has a Quad core processor which enables me to open as many windows and tabs as I want, to manage my work as well as my writing needs.

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The display is a narrow bezel design that reduces the width of screen-joining borders, giving a wonderful viewing experience. Its touch pad is 36% larger than the conventional laptops making it easier for you to move your cursor. This intuitive touch pad is integrated with smart gesture technology to enable effective multi-touch. Empowered with Windows 8.1, the ASUS EeeBook is smart in every possible way. The Microsoft Office 365 subscription is included in it with a one year subscription giving me access to all my work mails, any time and any where. Its great battery life allows 11 hours of video playing, 12 hours of web browsing and 13 hours of music playing. This notebook comes with a 2-cell battery that is equipped to provide up to 12 hours of battery life so that your work is never interrupted. The ASUS EeeBook offers up to 500 GB of web storage, which is free for two years and 1 Tb of online storage onto the Microsoft Onedrive, that is free for a whole year. This enables me to have all my documents, photos, music and movies at one place without having to bother about running out of space. 

Designed with streamlined curves and a tactile finish, this notebook offers a premium feel with all the essentials in it. ASUS has even designed the adapter to be compact and this one can easily be slid into your pocket. The Eeebook comes with a one year free subscription to full versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, Outlook, Powerpoint, Access, Publisher and OneNote. The device is powered by a 1.33 GHz Intel Atom quad-core processor with Intel Burst Technology up to 1.83 GHz to handle your everyday computing and the 2 GB DDR3 system memory facilitates smoother performance. This notebook is fan less and is designed to produce lesser noise so that you can work in peace. The notebook is designed with two front-facing speakers placed under the palm rest, that delivers premium quality immersive sound, making music a wonderful experience to listen to on the gadget. The micro SD card slot provided allows you to expand the storage up to 128 GB.

With the fine-tuned display settings and parameters, the Asus Splendid technology ensures crisp and vibrant visuals, making all that you watch feel life-like and real. All these features make this the most desired notebook within its price range. Priced at under 15,000 this one is totally worth the price and the experience. 

This post is written as an entry for Indi Happy Hours -  Go Sleek! activity in association with Indiblogger and ASUS.

Being Cupid

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The proposal is always said to be a man's thing but who says a woman cannot do it? Some people say that a woman proposing to a man is a desperate attempt, which is totally ridiculous. Love is the most wonderful emotion in the world and it remains the same no matter who proposes. Love is a very strong feeling and having the guts to express it and shout it off to the world is a huge thing. Believe me, not everyone can do that. We all have heard of those silent love stories, where two people are in love with each other but are shy or scared to tell the other person. Thank God, we do not live in that era anymore. And Valentine's day compels us to not keep quiet about the love we feel. I know we do not need just one day to express our love, but since Saint Valentines worked so hard for it, we might as well as make it worthwhile. Roses, chocolates and soft toys are so passé. And more over they are girly things. How would you propose to a man? The conventional methods would not suffice for me. If I'm doing it, I'm doing it my way. I'm going to break the norm, and go all bold and beautiful on him.

14th February: 7.30 pm

So its time for dinner and he is coming to take me out. I hear the door bell ring and I open the door dressed in the most sexiest little red dress ever. I have worked hard on my body for this day, by going on a serious diet and working out religiously. The dress fits me just right, highlighting my slim hips and my toned legs. The look on his face is worth every bit of the effort that I had put in. He wants to take me out, but instead I invite him in. The lighting at home is dimmed, except for the fairy lights. I welcome him with a smile and accept the roses that he has bought for me. I sway in my high heels and walk up to a crystal vase and place the flowers in them. I hold his hand and lead him to the dining room where I have a gourmet spread ready for him. Our grandmas always told us that the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. Well, that is my idea number one. I have cooked the entire meal for him, filled with love.

We start of with some stuffed button mushrooms, hummus and a variety of dips. I pour out red wine and we raise a toast for today. He is startled and thrilled at the same time. My red lips grace the glass and I see him watch my every action. He tries the food and his looks tells me that he loves it. I am satisfied. We make small talk as I bring in the main course of creamy white pasta and freshly baked garlic bread. He is amazed by how beautiful the food looks and tucks in soon enough. After the first mouthful, he praises me for the taste. I smile and refill his glass of wine. For dessert, I bring out the still warm choco lava cake from the oven. I place it in front of him and tease him with a spray of whipped cream on it. His eyes open wide but I settle down in my seat. I take a bite of the cake and let some of the chocolate ooze out from my lips. He looks at me and I delicately wipe off the chocolate. We finish the dessert, but the wine still remains. We walk out to the balcony to get some fresh air. We sit on the swing and talk as the subtle winter chill falls on us.

14 February: 9 pm

Once dinner and the wine is done, I play some light romantic music. He asks me for a dance and I agree. His hands find my hip as I place my well manicured hands on his shoulders. We sway to the music as I see the love for me in his eyes. He comes closer and whispers in my ears that I'm looking very beautiful today. I smile as the music changes to 'You're Beautiful'. He smiles too as he complements every single move of mine. After three songs, he comes closer to kiss me. I push him away and walk into the bedroom. He follows me, but I close the door. I slip a note from beneath the door asking him to wait for five minutes, with my lip stain on it. He obliges, obviously.

Five minutes later, I walk out of the room dressed in white lace, wearing shiny wings. Oh yeah, just like cupid. Before I let his eyes fall all over me, I take him back to the living room. The slow music is still on, as I recite a poem that I had written specifically for this occasion. My voice chokes as I get caught up in emotion. I see tears flowing out of his eyes too. The music is soon drowned out as I kneel down and propose to him. He instantly says a yes and pulls me into his arms. He comes closer and plants his lips on mine.

14 February: 10 pm

The beginning.

This post is written as an entry for Indi Happy Hours -  Cupid Games 2015 activity in association with Indiblogger and Closeup.

Look Closer

Copyright – Georgia Koch

When the man I loved abandoned me on my wedding day and my village banished me, I packed all my luggage and set off on my boat, to start a brand new life. I did not make it there though, my journey was cut short as I drowned in my feelings as well as in life. But I did not leave this earth, I sit here at this abandoned spot on my boat, planning my revenge. I just fell in love truly, madly and deeply; and I did not deserve an end like this. Look closer, you can see me.

This five sentence fiction is written for the topic 'Abandon' at Lillie McFerrin Writes.

This drabble (100 word fiction) is written for Friday Fictioneers, 23rd January 2015.

Blue

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It was love at first sight
It would happen, I had no clue
I remember you walking down the road
With a flowing dress in powdered blue

I was scared to approach you
But in my heart, you were mine
Watching you gave me immense peace
You were my ray of sunshine

Days passed but my tongue was tied
Then you walked up to me with a smile
Hearing you speak drove my crazy
Wondering why I was quiet all this while

I knew I was just a friend
By my love for you only grew
I did not say anything to you
But I'm sure somewhere the truth you knew

Our friendship remained strong
I was afraid to jinx it
But without telling you how I feel
I was dying inside bit by bit

I wondered why you didn't say anything
At times I felt you love me too
But how could I be sure of it
What if it was too good to be true

I couldn't hold it in anymore
It was too much for me to bear
But when I saw your happy face
I knew that we were already a pair

Thank you for coming into my life
And painting love in every hue
You helped me grow wings to fly
Coloring my life a happy blue

Who's The Boss?

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Remember how this ad created such a furor in our country, where a woman is shown to be the boss while her husband is her subordinate. A lot was spoken and many people trashed this ad by calling the woman different terms. Yesterday's newspaper spoke about how being a housewife is such a thankless job. A certain court even ruled that the monthly salary for a housewife is equivalent to around Rs. 5000. Five thousand for an entire day's work for thirty days? Talk about being frugal. Rs. 5000 is something that youngsters spend in a weekend now. Be it at a party or shopping. Rs. 5000 doesn't guarantee a stay in a decent place. When was the last time you heard about a one BHK being available for rent at Rs. 5000? Yes, never! Rs. 5000 is something a woman spends just for an hour's session at the parlor for waxing, a facial and a haircut. And this is expected to be the salary of a home maker? A slow salute to that judge who declared this.

If a woman is not allowed to be the boss, then who is? How do you define the term boss? A boss is someone who is the master of all trades and knows how to get work done. A woman wakes up in the morning, cooks breakfast and lunch, cleans the house, washes the vessels, irons your clothes, packs your lunch and sends you off to to work. If she has children then an extra routine of dressing up the kid is added. Once everyone has left the house, she has to clean up again for all the mess left behind. Then she goes to wash her clothes as well as that of the family. Then she has to look into the bills and check if everything is sorted out. Else, you would obviously come back to blame her for missing something. And if someone is ill in the house she is expected to be the nurse and take care of them until they are back on their feet. She is also expected to go shopping for vegetables, cook gourmet food, please her in-laws and husband and everything else. Considering the fact that she does every chore in the house and excels at it, isn't she already the boss? Infact she is much more than a boss as a boss is expected to get things done. But a woman does all the things herself and that too without complaining. If she is a working lady, then she should be called a superwoman and not the boss.

Take the simple chore of laundry for example. A woman washes the clothes of all the family members, no matter how soiled the clothes are. Be it mud soaked shorts of a toddler, an ink stained shirt of a teen or a T-shirt reeking of sweat of an adult. A woman is the default washing machine of the house and is expected to be spic and span in the work she does. She uses her own hands to pick those soiled clothes, soak them in water and soap, scrub every garment individually, rinse it three times, soak it in some good smelling fabric conditioner and then hang it out in the sun to dry. And more often than not in almost every house, the underwear of men is washed by the woman of the house too. And I'm not even going to explain how disgusting this is. By the time the woman is done with all her washing, her hands would resemble prunes and her legs would give way. Some of you might argue that no one manually washes clothes these days, but uses a washing machine. Even then, the clothes don't miraculously go into the machine by themselves and come out clean and dry. The clothes have to be separated, colors much be washed separately, the cuffs and collars must be hand scrubbed, the washing powder has to be manually added and the machine has to be switched on. And only a woman knows the various settings of a washing machine and how different types of clothes need different settings. No washing machine in the world dries the clothes one hundred percent. It has to be hung out in the sun to dry. And a woman has to do it. Once the clothes are dry, who collects them, irons them and stacks them up in your closet? Oh yes, it is a woman indeed.

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Now, let me get the basics right. A man has two hands and two legs as well. Meaning, he is capable of picking his own clothes and washing them, or is capable enough to walk up to the washing machine and put it in. Men are blessed with two eyes as well right, so they can read the instructions on how to use a washing machine. And if they have even half a brain, they can use logic and get the machine to work. But do you think they do that? Apparently, 76% of Indian men feel that laundry is a woman's job and 77% of them always depend on a woman to do their laundry. Be it their mother or their wife. I seriously feel like applauding such men. They have 100% crossed the line of audacity. A woman has a soft heart and hence she doesn't expect the man to do his chores. All she wants is a little assistance in the household work. Two out of three men prefer to watch TV instead of doing laundry, while more than 70% of women feel that a man chooses to relax over helping with the household chores. Isn't the inequality clear here? So tell me why shouldn't a woman be called the boss?

Dear men, if you want to be treated like the boss then please make sure you work your way up there. We women understand that you have a lot of work at office, but remember that even your boss at work was once a subordinate. And when it comes to household work, you are still a novice. You need to start from scratch and slowly work your way up, in order to be called or treated like a boss. Just because you bring in the money, doesn't automatically make you the boss. The woman brings in the money and manages the house too, so why shouldn't she be called the boss? At work you are always trying to make an impression on your boss, by working a little extra or by taking in other work. And that too for just a few extra bucks. Why not do the same thing at home and earn the respect and love of your mother or wife? It is not that hard. All you need to do is assist your mother or wife in the work they do. The least you can do is to do your own laundry. Making a woman do your work doesn't make you the boss. To be a boss you need to have undergone the experience that you are expecting out of the other person. Since, you have zero experience in it, you are nowhere close to it.

So now tell me, who is the boss?

I am writing for #IsLaundryOnlyAWomansJob activity at BlogAdda.com in association with Ariel.

My AND Story

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In life all of us have to make choices. All of us are expected to choose what is good for us and what we can do. And this has nothing to do with that the fact that the person is a man or a woman. Its not that only women have to make choices and men can have it all, men have to make choices and compromises too. But more often than not a woman is expected to make choices, and let the man have his way. People expect women to be born with that compromising attitude and if she does not have it in her, then she is not a good lady. She is considered selfish and arrogant. Who decides that women have to make compromises? If society's rule book dictates these terms then I am proud to not adhere to it and stand out. Why are we all letting go of what we want to do and following something that does not make sense in the first place. Isn't that the biggest form of compromise that we all are making. And that too by lying to ourselves. It is definitely not worth it.

Women should be adjusting, they should be accommodating. Women should put their partners choices ahead of them and compromise on their own choices. A woman should accept whatever is put in front of her without complaining. In her late teens, she is expected to put her studies and ambitions aside and learn cooking to impress her future husband. Once married, she should give up all her desires and spend the rest of her life satiating her husband. When she has her kids, she has to leave everything and cater to their every need, without flinching. Wow, these are exactly the things that I cannot and do not want to do. I myself have been a victim of the society's expectations where I have been asked to choose between this or that. And I'm proud of the fact that I did not bow down to any of that have stood strong and tall.

I'm sharing four most important stories of my life here.

1. Love or Career.

This is a very personal battle and something that I am very proud about. I had just gotten out of a relationship and I was feeling really low. I put all the focus and extra time I had into work and excelled at it. I reached the peak of my career and people wanted me to work for them at any cost. I had become almost indispensable and they could not do without me. I was enjoying my success and was absolutely in love with my work. And then after a year, love found me again. As much as I wanted to embrace it, people warned me against it. They told me that a man might hold me back from my work. I found that utterly unreasonable, yet, they wouldn't stop. Someone told me that being in a relationship right now would mean a distraction and that I cannot focus enough on my work. They told me that I will lose out on all my success and it would be a let down for me. But I was not the one to listen to them. I went ahead with what my heart told me. I was madly in love with the man, but that did not mean that I didn't love my work anymore. I chose love and work and balanced it beautifully. Of course there were time constraints, but what is life without multitasking? All it needs is a little extra effort and you can achieve it all. Today I'm doing extremely well at work and am happily married to the same man I fell in love with. Who says a compromise is needed in love or life? If you have the determination to do something, you can have it all.

2. Regular job or Writing.

I started taking writing seriously about two years ago. Until then the writing was only for me and it was an out flow for my thoughts. But then it started going really well and I started writing fiction pieces that people loved. The response I received for my stories were very encouraging and then writing became a parallel career for me. When people found out that this is not the only thing I do, but am in a regular job as well, they asked me to quit either one of it. A woman should not be over ambitious they said, I laughed at them. They told me that I cannot follow two passions at the same time. Job or writing was the choice in front of me. Without thinking twice, I knew that I was not the one to succumb to this 'or'. I wanted to do both. I finish my regular 10 to 6 job and after that take time out for my writing. I do not miss a day of both. It is my dedication to both my passions that has kept me going. I have no intention of proving it to the world that I can do both. I just want to do it for myself. Today my own fiction book is in progress and so is my regular job. And both of them are in a very good place. Had I chosen to kneel down the 'or', then there is no way I would have been at peace with myself. Choosing the 'and' here has giving me so much of happiness and contentment that I am so proud of the choice that I did not make.

3. Passions or Marriage.

My mother told me just one thing on my wedding day. To continue to do what I have to do and to never compromise on my happiness. She has been a working lady throughout her life and I look up to her. It wasn't my parents who had a problem with my job and creativity, it was others. They told me to quit my work and settle into holy matrimony. Work or marriage, I was asked to choose. They told me that I cannot manage both and would fail at being a good wife. I smiled and told them that I know what I was doing. Quitting my job would be last thing that I do in my life. It was difficult at first, to manage the household chores and a regular job. But with a little extra effort it can be achieved easily. I found a neat balance between my professional and personal work, and yet people would not stop talking. When I chose to write along with my work, they told me that I cannot do both and choose one of it. When I wanted to read, paint and dance, they told me that I should choose cooking and just do that because I was a woman and I am not allowed to be the master of all. It was the most ridiculous thing that I had ever heard. But then again, some people love to abide by the society rule book. Good for them. But I was not born to make choices, I was born to do whatever I felt. And hence, here I am today.

4. Traditions or beliefs.

I fell with love with a man who belonged to an orthodox Brahmin family. Nobody from his family opposed the fact that I was a non-Brahmin and a meat lover. But I had to choose between my own beliefs of being a modern and independent girl or to embrace their traditional customs. There were people who went to the extent of telling that I would not be able to fit into the family, because I was way too modern. Yes, modern I am and I am anything but religious. I know there is a God and that is all there is to it. I do not chant mantras or slogans nor do I visit temples. That does not mean that I'm an atheist and am hell bent upon embracing blasphemy. I respect the traditions of my in-laws and take part in it wholeheartedly. And the same time holding on to my beliefs and modernity. Today I love my kanjeevaram saree as much as I love my skinny jeans. I can carry off a salwar kameez just like the way I carry off hot pants. I chose to be traditional and modern. Why do I have to stick to a modern outlook and shun the traditions? Or why do I have to accept all the traditions and let go off my beliefs? I wanted to do both and have so far managed to go a very good job at it. This does not mean that I'm that cliched girl who is traditional with a modern outlook. I am that girl who is traditional and modern at the same time. I have my beliefs, my modern thoughts, my faith and my mind at the right place.

Having to choose between simple pleasures of life is a punishment for anyone. And more so if you are constantly expected to choose just because you are a woman, then it is something that all of us have to fight for. Why can't a woman multitask and have all that she wants? Just because she is good at one thing doesn't mean that that is all she is supposed to do. She is not a door mat that people use to walk around. She is the lady of a house and she has as much ambitions as anybody else. I refuse to bow down to the conditions laid in front of me. I refuse to cave in to the hypocrisies of society. I refuse to abide by the nonsensical society rule book. I am my sole owner and I know what I want from life. And I shall not rest until I achieve what I want to. All the 'OR's in my way will be turned into 'AND's and I shall march ahead with my head held high.

And I stand tall and proud!

This post is a part of #UseYourAnd activity at BlogAdda in association with Gillette Venus.

Nothing But Love

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I know that you are the mighty princess and I am the stable boy, and yet my heart doesn't stop beating for you. Its not your beauty that captured me, but that innocent and loving heart of yours. Today, you are ready to elope with me in the quest of a happily ever after. But my mind and heart is filled with questions, as I have nothing to offer you; except love

And then your eyes assure me that it is more than enough.

This five sentence fiction is written for the topic 'Offering' at Lillie McFerrin Writes.

All That I Am

I am me, just let me be.

I am the younger of the two daughters born to my parents. Apparently when I was born, my grandparents cursed my parents for giving birth to yet another girl child. Everyone looked down upon my folks for having two daughters, wondering how will they get us married. Today both my sister and I are in very good positions at reputed companies and taking care of our parents very well. The same people are now forced to eat their own words. Being a woman has never held me back from doing anything that I wanted to do. And by anything, I mean everything. I refuse to be labelled as the weaker sex. We live in a country where we are forced to use words like equality and feminist. Suddenly 'feminist' is a bad word and any woman who calls herself one is labelled as bold. Every one has a right to stand up for themselves. This applies to both men and women. I have lived all my life being proud of the fact that I am a woman and it definitely takes more than one word to define me.

Daughter: My first role and the primary point of my being. Being a girl child has never stopped me from fighting for my rights as well as that of my parents. If I was mocked by boys in school, I would fight with them without thinking twice. People tried to label me a rebel, but I was just someone who wanted to let be. Today, even though I am married, my parents remain my priority and I would take care of them as long as I'm alive. 

Friend: I have a small bunch of friends who I am very protective about. I wouldn't mind dropping my girl friends off first and then going back to my own place. No, I'm not trying to be a man here. I am just me as I know that I can take care of myself very well. Since they mean a lot to me, I'm concerned for their safety first. Isn't that what friends do? 

Career woman: It has been almost seven years since I started working and this is the thing that defines me the most. I have a firm head on my shoulders and I'm dedicated to my work round the clock. This gives me my daily bread and butter and there is no way I am compromising on this one. If a man is the breadwinner, then it is the woman who brings home the oven.

Writer: This is something that gives me utmost happiness. My chaotic mind needs an outflow and writing to me is just that. I do not think twice about writing what I feel. As long as it is the truth I am fine with it. If others have problems, then it is not my problem. Even when I have had a busy day, I make sure that I take time out to write. Every emotion that I feel has made it into something I write. I don't see myself without writing. I need it to survive.

Dancer: No I'm not a trained dancer, but dancing is the best rejuvenation for me. It helps me let out steam and perks me up instantly. It need not be on a stage or a performance. I can just dance haphazardly to any tune in front of my mirror and feel good about myself. I have performed on stage of course, but the peace I get when I dance like no one is watching is something else altogether.

Bibliophile: Everything that I know and all that I am today is because I read. Books are what I spend most of my money on and I have not regretted that one bit. I would never have thought of becoming a writer had I not been a reader. My language today is polished because I read. I know the big words because I read. I know what is happening around me because I read. It is hard to manage the time to read and write, but it is worth the effort. Reading has even thought me the art of multitasking.

Poetess: The best way that I can express feelings is in the form of a poem. Somehow poetry is very easy for me to write when compared to fiction. I like rhyming words and seamless poetry. This gives me inner peace and it is the closest that I have come to Nirvana.

Painter: When words fail to do justice to my thoughts, paints come in handy. Thanks to my mother, I have a crazy creative streak in me that refuses to die down. I can draw, doodle and paint as and when I like. Or feel. It is the most sacred form of expression.

Designer: Yes, I can stitch my own clothes. I have a quirky sense of dressing and most often than not I design my clothes myself. I pick up fabric, cut it and stitch it myself. It is not that I cannot to afford to buy clothes. Making my own clothes gives me a sense of independence and I feel proud of it.

Bold: Most of the people on the blogosphere know me as that bold writer. They make me sound like I write porno stuff. I write what the truth is and how I see it. I do not expect to make a change in the world or preach something to someone. I write and do things that I think is right. If that is called being bold, then I am. I am not afraid of standing up for what is right or questioning the existing system. If that is called being bold, then I am. I have the guts to accept the truth and talk about it. If that is called being bold, then I am. I can dig up the truth and rub it on the faces of others. If that is called being bold, then I am.

Masterchef: I do not cook because I am a woman. I cook because I enjoy cooking. And baking. Food to me is an edible form of love and I am absolutely in love with it. I love cooking and feeding it to people. Especially cakes and desserts. I can whip up a meal under thirty minutes and I do not consider it a chore or a duty. I repeat, I cook because I love cooking, not because I am a woman.

Wife: I fell in love and since society needs a paper to prove a relationship, I got married. I am a wife yes, but primarily I'm still a lover who is madly in love with her man. Being a wife, doesn't mean that I have to take care of my husband and do all the household chores. I don't do that. I'm a companion for life, not a personal maid. Whatever has to be done, we do it together. Society cusses and curses, but I refuse to bow down to it.

OCD Freak: I like things done a certain way and I'm proud of it. My clothes must be folded the right way, and the books in my shelf should be arranged author wise. And this is just the tip of the iceberg. I have a lot of quirks and I'm very happy with it as it is something personal to me. And I do not trouble anyone with it. Whatever has to be done, I do it myself.

Social: I love my work and I love to cook. And I love to party like there is no tomorrow. I like to wear fashionable clothes and let my hair loose once in a while. That does not mean that I'm an easy target. I can hold on to my alcohol and proudly state the fact that I drink. That doesn't mean I'm a slut. I can voice out my opinions on social forums or in a crowd. That doesn't mean that I'm an attention seeker. I am a woman who knows what she is doing and has no reason to not have some fun.

Not ready to be a mother: It has been close to two years since I've been married and every Tom, Dick and Aunty are asking us about a baby. At every occasion, every gathering, this is the topic in hand. People look at us like something is wrong with both of us. Its a personal choice. I feel that I am not ready to be a mother yet and my husband stands by my side. He doesn't want a baby either and we are very happy showering all our love on each other. I refuse to abide by the society report card. I love my life the way it is and right now I have no space or need for a baby in it.

And at last but not the least,

Feminist: Not that male bashing kinds. I'm a kind of feminist who believes that woman do not need any special rights. I do not expect special privileges to be given to the woman either. I just believe that men and woman are equal and they need to be treated equally without any bias. Be it at work or at home. The pay scale should be equal too and karma should be put to rest. That's all I ask. And if that makes me a feminist then so be it.

These are all the things that define me as a woman and I am proud of each and everything. I could have easily chosen just one or a few of this. But instead of an 'OR' I chose an 'AND'. That is the best ever thing that I have done in my life. It is not something extraordinary. It is just normal to want to be a lot of things and put in the effort to succeed. Even a man has to choose a lot of things in his life. But they are never spoken about. But it is always a woman who is scrutinized for her choices. Put me under a microscope and peep into my life as and when you like, that is not going to stop me from being what I am. I am not trying to be super woman or bat woman here. I'm a simple woman, who is not afraid to do what she wants and can stand up for herself. And no label can do justice to this.

This post is a part of #UseYourAnd activity at BlogAdda in association with Gillette Venus.

Settle Down Quikr #QuikrBLR

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A dear friend of mine is soon going to be relocating from Hyderabad to Bangalore and I'm thrilled. I visited Hyderabad last year and I found it to be a very beautiful city. I stayed in Banjara Hills, one of the most poshest residential areas of Hyderabad and the place was excellent. And so was the weather. We visited during July and the weather was uber pleasant. It reminded me of Bangalore in more ways than one. So I want to make sure that my friend doesn't miss her city much when she moves here. I'm sure no city holds a candle to Bangalore. For me, without a doubt Bangalore is the best place to live in. This city has everything that one could need and experience. And I will do everything I can to make my friend's stay here as smooth and comfortable as possible. She is shifting here for a year or two, so, everything needs to be sorted for her as quick as possible. She would be staying with me until she settles down, and she needs everything for her at one place only to avoid all the running around. And that is when I recommended Quikr to her, so that she can set up her own house quickly.

The first thing that she would need is a house. I know there are a lot of real estate sites in India now, but the easiest way to find a house now is on Quikr. There is nothing else that I would recommend for this. You do not even have to sign up with Quikr to use their features. On their home page you can see all the amenities that they offer. The 'Real Estate' option provided by Quikr allows us to choose apartments for rent or to buy. You can narrow down your options by choosing the number of bedrooms you need along with the furnishing i.e, fully furnished, semi furnished or unfurnished. Even if you like an unfurnished house, go for it without hesitation. For furnishing the house too I would only recommend Quikr. Since her job involves a lot of travelling, she might have to move out to a different city again. Why invest in brand new goods just for a while? While leaving the city she would have to sell these off at throwaway prices. So instead it is better to pick furnishings from Quikr and while moving out she can sell it back on Quikr. Easy, ain't it?

Her office is going to be in Electronic City but she wants to stay in and around my place in Indiranagar. Both are like different ends of the city. The travel is going to take a toll on her, but her office would not be providing transport. I recommended Quikr to her, to solve this problem as well. Quikr offers wonderful deals on cars and bikes. The deals on Quikr are directly from seller to buyer without a third party in between, making it easy and smooth. All one has to do is search for a preferred vehicle, view the pictures, get the contact information and talk to the seller directly. You can check out four or five sellers before narrowing it down to one. It is really simple and quick. Once you are done with using the vehicle, click a picture of the car and post a free ad on Quikr. It will get sold almost immediately, I assure you. So house done, vehicle done; all thanks to Quikr.

Screen Grab From Quikr

The reasons for which I would recommend Quikr to anyone who is moving to Bangalore are plenty. First, this is a one stop destination for all your relocation needs. From houses to furniture, and cars to electronics, everything you can find here. All one needs is to visit the website or the app, have some patience and search for their required items. Incase you have a pet and are new to Bangalore, you can even find the details of pet care facilities here. However, the best ever feature on Quikr are their 'Services' section. This section offers details on everything that one needs when moving to a new city. You can find contacts of interior designers, baby sitters, beauty parlors, plumbers, electricians, cooks, maids, household repairs and almost every other service under the sun. I have never seen this in any other site before. My friend and anybody else who is moving to Bangalore, can get all the help and information they need under this one quick site called Quikr. 

Another reason I recommend Quikr is because it is a site with a heart. Why, you ask? They have a section called 'Lost and Found' where people post information of things they found or lost along with the details of the item and their contact number. In this way, if not all atleast some items can be returned to the rightful owner. I was surprised to see such a feature on an Indian site! Quikr even has a matrimonial section where you can search for life partners. Didn't I tell you before that this site is the one stop destination for everything that you need. Partner included. A site like this helps even a layman to get hold of things that they need when they move to a new city. Some people might hesitate before buying used items, but you can check the item out before buying as you can directly deal with the seller. If not convinced, you can choose not to buy it. It all lies in the hands of the buyer.

I have already recommended bangalore.quikr.com to my friend and she is almost half settled here now. I would close my eyes and recommend bangalore.quikr.com to anyone who is relocating to Bangalore. Having said that, Quikr even has details of packers and movers so that you can bring your existing items from the city you are moving out from. What more does one need and why should I not recommend this? I have a million reasons to recommend this to my friends and to anyone else who is locating to Bangalore and I will continue to do so.

This post is written as an entry for Indi Happy Hours -  It's just Quikr in Bangalore! activity in association with Indiblogger and bangalore.quikr.com.

Standing Proud & Tall

Photo by Elene Usdin

I shall wear anything that I want
My clothes don't determine if I rise or fall
My hard work shall speak for itself
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I'm not lesser than any man
In our statures there is no big or small
I'm not weak in any form
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

Cooking, cleaning and the household chores
Why does a woman have to do it all
I was not born to please a man
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I can travel alone around the word
From a man I do not need the NOC call
I own my mind and can make decisions
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I can be the leader in every field
I'm not just a vain beautified doll
I do not mind getting my hands dirty
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I have the right to think and choose
In my court shall be present the ball 
I shall not bow down to the bias
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I have the power to give birth
Due to this, my success shall never stall
Being a mother is not my only role
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I'm stronger than what everyone thinks
To get to me you have to break more than one wall
I can make and break in the equal amount
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

I have a life that I made for myself
This cannot be ignored in a single scroll
My story has enough pages to fill a book
I'm a woman standing proud and tall

Written for Magpie Tales: Mag 253.

Gifted

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Some days ago there was this interesting article in the newspaper about wedding gifts. The article spoke about how couples these days mention "No Gifts Please" on their wedding cards and how there are some typical wedding gifts that offer no use whatsoever. I was reminded of my wedding gifts on reading that and how I had planned to write about it. It has been almost two years since my wedding now and yet some gifts come back to haunt me every now and then. A wedding is a very personal affair, but mine was anything but that. Almost half the crowd of Bangalore was invited to my wedding and before I could realize, there was a huge pile of gifts wrapped in shining paper piled all around the house. I always feel that it is better to ask the couple what they want as a gift and then get it for them. If you are not close to the couple, then it is always better to gift cash instead of some tacky show piece. Even hundred bucks is fine as long as it can be used. The process of unwrapping the gifts was so tedious that it made me think why did I get married in the first place. 

So a week after marriage, my husband, my mother-in-law and I sat down to sort out the huge pile in front of us. As if it was not enough, I had even got all the gifts from my mother's place to my new house to add on to the already overflowing heap. Well, we had no choice but to unwrap it and sort it out. I can never forget the first gift that I unwrapped. It was a delicate crystal bowl with a gorgeously carved lid. Since I'm a sucker for all things white and delicate, I thought this would look great as the center piece of our dining table. I fell in love with it instantly. I thought if all the gifts would be this great, then I would enjoy setting up my new house where I was to move soon. After this brilliant gift, the luck ran out. The next one was a standing clock. Like it doesn't sound bad already, the clock had pink, purple and red hearts in the form of bubbles. It went straight to the not for us bin. The not for us bin was a sack that we used to collect the gifts that we would not be using so that we can give it off to someone else. Give it off, not gift it. Although we did receive a lot of recycled wedding gifts from other weddings, we choose not to gift those to someone else and be a part of that vicious cycle. We have a heart, you see.

The most cliched gifts ever are lemon sets, dinner sets and tea sets, and that is exactly what we received the most. It drove me up the wall. In every house there are people who drink tea or coffee on a regular basis and hence they have cups and saucers. What is the need to gift that then? Same applies to the others as well. We received some dinner sets that were clearly recycled ones. Meaning it was a gift to someone and that someone decided to re-gift it. It is very easy to find out such gifts. The boxes have an old look and more often than not they are faded making the plates and bowls look a dull grey instead of white. The recycled show pieces are easy to identify, they have dust accumulated on them. Yes, some people do not bother to even clean the item before gift wrapping it. We received so many flower vases that we now have vases in every corner of every room.  Bathroom included. The same applies to clocks as well. We are never late, and this is exactly why.

I told my friends to get me a stand mixer, since I'm a good baker and I have been wanting a stand mixer from quite a while. They got it for me. And I told my other close friends what I wanted and thankfully there were no surprises. We received some tupper ware sets and a lot of photo frames, most of which were useful. Someone gave us a set of beautiful red wine glasses and till date it is the most used gift in our house. Cal and I like to unwind every weekend with some red wine and a movie and these glasses have stayed with us since two years now. Since Cal and I were supposed to move into our own house immediately after marriage, my mother's friends had given me a cooker and some basic vessels. My mother on the other hand gave me half a steel shop, with every possible utensil in it, from a cauldron to heat water to a spoon. It is some custom I believe, but as of now it is lying unused in our store room. When we move out two months later, we might use it. Not sure of it though, as I do not like steel vessels much and I hate to see a lot of utensils around the kitchen. I'll just buy a set of non-stick cookware and stick to it for all sorts of cooking. Since it is just going to be Cal and me, I think it would be more than enough.

The best gifts we received were obviously cash, since we could use it to buy what ever we wanted. Some close friends gifted us vouchers which were awesome too, atleast you could choose your own stuff while shopping. But the cash gifts had a story to tell too. There were people who had calculated the amount we had given for their family occasions and decided to give back the exact same amount. That was years ago people, atleast you should have added the interest. Then there were those modified envelopes. First it said from XYZ family. And then right underneath it said from ABC family too and then LMN family too was squeezed into the same envelope. It is better not to give anything instead of being so frugal and obvious. A wedding is held to celebrate the union of two people who love each other. Others are invited to be a part of it. Gifts are not mandatory at all. And I believe that gifts have to be personal, else it has to be cash. Gifting just for the sake of it or calculated cash gifts seem so contrived and takes away the entire joy of the so called celebration. And then there are those people who gift cash according to the number of people who attend the wedding. Oh yes, welcome to India! The whole wedding scene is such a drama that you cannot stop thinking about it, just like the way I cannot stop writing about it.

But I think I should.

The Other Woman

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Suraj dressed up as quickly as he could. He looked around the room for his pants which were now tossed across the room. Shipra lay spread out naked on the bed, with the satin golden bed sheet wrapped around her haphazardly. How much he loved her body. She did miraculous things to him and he was thrilled to have had a piece of her. Having met her at a social gathering, he had fallen deeply in lust for her. And unfortunately for her, she had fallen in love with him. Once he was done, he walked up to her and kissed her passionately.

I’ll see you tonight then?” She asks cupping his face.

No, this is it. I’m not coming back.” He picks up his bag.

She jumps out of the bed startled, totally oblivious of her naked frame. Suraj admires her body yet again. It had been more than a year since he owned every bit of her, and yet he wanted more. But his wretched wife had come to know about his affair and was threatening to leave him. It would not do well to his image in the society if this news came out. He had no choice but to let go off this beauty.

What are you saying?” Shipra blurts out.

My wife found out. I can’t do this anymore.”

No, you cannot leave me like this. I love you Suraj, you know that.” She hugs him tight.

The smell of her made him go crazy. And before he knew it, he was peeling off his clothes again and pouncing on her, pushing her into the sheets. Thirty minutes later, he bid a goodbye and walked away. Forever.

Suraj arrived home just before 9 am. His wife was already up and sitting at the table for breakfast. She was fully dressed and looked very pretty. Suraj smiles.

Looking gorgeous darling!” He bent down to kiss her.

She gives him a disgusted look and pushes him away.

How dare you, Suraj. You stay away all night and now you do this.” She looks at him in the eye.

I was at work Neha, I was in meetings all night with the clients.”

I know what your meetings are. I’m leaving, Suraj. I need a divorce.” She stands up.

Suraj stares at her with fear in his eye.

I’m sorry Neha. I told you I’ll leave her and I did. It is only you in my life now, please don’t do this.” He chokes.

It’s not that. I have somebody else in my life now and I want to move on with him. I need a divorce at any cost.” Her voice is firm and clear.

You…. That is why you want a divorce? After making me feel so guilty for having an affair, while you yourself were having one?” He spat out.

Oh, you shouldn’t judge me Suraj. I did the same thing you did. Clearly we cannot stay together, I’m leaving.” She says and walks away with her luggage in tow.

Suraj grabs his car keys and rushes to go meet Shipra. He can be all hers now. He drives as quickly as he can, to reach her place. He finds the door open and sees her clothes strewn across the floor. He smiles, maybe she was expecting him after all. Not finding her in the room, he looks around the house and hears the flow of water in the bathroom. The door is unlocked and he opens the door wide with a huge smile on his face. The color on his face drains out as he sees his mistress’s limp body in the tub with her wrists slashed.

Strangely, it was the other woman who had remained loyal throughout.



Fresh Love

© Copyright Jean L. Hays

Today is the first day of the year and I'm up with the sun all set for my morning walk. I slowly walk along the road, basking in the mild heat and hoping for a fresh start to the year. Just as I reached the cross road, I saw someone walking in the opposite direction and talking continuously on the phone. Tall, dark and handsome, he was sweating profusely and yet managed to look breathtakingly handsome. He gave me a quick look and a smile escaped his lips; and there it was, the first glimpse of my first love story.

This five sentence fiction is written for the topic 'Fresh' at Lillie McFerrin Writes.

This drabble (100 word fiction) is written for Friday Fictioneers, 9th January 2015.

Call Me Hope

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When things begin to look bleak
Just hang on to my string
I'm not sure if it will help
But solace I shall surely bring

I do not want to hurt you
But I cannot get you to the end
I'm just a companion along the way
Only a helping hand I can lend

Do not expect me to do the work
I don't know what has to be done
I shall give you the strength for it
Both of us will just look like one

I'm invisible, but I see you
Plagued by discourage and pain
I cannot promise you happiness
But your journey will not go in vain

From this, something else you shall learn
Just do not give up on life
Hang on with all your strength
I'm with you through your strife

Do not depend on me completely
I might not be able to give you all
The only thing I can do is
Support you a little before you fall

In that support you need to trust
In the results I have no say
Just believe that I exist somewhere
I'm equivalent to the God you pray

I shall not give up on you
Even when things are out of scope
You should hold on to me too
I'm your friend and you can call me hope

Action Replay - December & 2014

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December has been a wonderful and eventful month. I got almost all of my work done and my writing too picked up pace with about eighteen posts this month. Well, I am happy. December gave me a good pay hike as well as extra income with my writing. Plus I finally won a contest on Indiblogger and that too the grand prize. The prize was an all expense paid trip to Kochi to attend the Nissan Safety Driving Forum and a Kindle paper white. Sadly, I could not attend the event hence I had to pass the offer to go to Kochi. But I will be receiving my Kindle soon. Of late I have seen a lot of Facebook updates where hardcore book lovers have fallen head over heels in love with the Kindle. I was against it and always thought that nothing can replace the concept of a good bulky book in my hand. But ever since I installed the Kindle app on my iPad, I am hooked to it! I love the ease and the feel of reading remains the same. I love the fresh bright font and the fact that it does not trouble my eyes. Although I miss the smell of the paper and the fancy bookmarks that I collect, Kindle is now becoming my new favorite. Cannot wait to receive it and jump headlong into the e-book experience.

Christmas was a very happy one this time. Secret Santa at office was fantastic and Cal and I got a much deserved break during the Christmas weekend. Four days of relaxing, catching up on sleep and exploring new food outlets. Cal has become immensely popular on Zomato and now I am slowly following his footsteps there as we both are keen on starting something related to food very soon. Most of you know about the Live To Eat page that we run on Facebook that tells you about the best places to visit in and around Bangalore for scrumptious food. If you haven't liked it yet, please go and like it now. We also want to take it further with an exclusive food blog. Soon, we shall. December made me realize about all the good things that I have been blessed with. An awesome job that gives me good recognition as well as ample time to pursue my other interests. I don't know where I got my writing skills from, but I'm so glad that I did. Special thanks to my wonderful friend Kirik, for giving me that extra push and pulling me into the blogosphere six years ago. Today, I cannot imagine myself without my blog. Without writing, my mind would have been a chaotic volcano ready to burst. I'm no Agatha Christie or Danielle Steel, but I'm glad I atleast have the basic talent to give life to my thoughts and words.

December ended soon with a wonderful get together with family. New years eve rocked and all of we cousins had a gala time. The night was long and we had such a wonderful time. Also realized that this is the fourth consecutive new year that I have celebrated with Cal. 2012 as friends and almost lovers, 2013 as an engaged couple, 2014 as man and wife and now 2015 as lovers, man and wife and most importantly the best of friends. I do not understand what I would have done if I did not have him in my life. He credits all his success in the food sphere to me, but I owe my life and everything else to him. It was he who understood my passion for writing and urged me to pursue it continuously even after marriage. I hardly found time to read or write after marriage as the household chores kicked in. He helped me with everything and made sure I have time to do whatever I wanted to do. He did not cringe when I paid huge amounts to buy books, he just smiled and helped me organise those books. What a lovely human being and a wonderful partner he is. He defines the term 'partner' in every way. Be it in pleasure, sadness or in crime. He has always been by my side no matter what. I have always been this strong headed, independent girl. But today he is my strength and everything else that I stand for. My life revolves around him and is for him.

2014 has been a miraculous year for both of us. In terms of work and everything else. 2014 is also the year that I made peace with all the demons in my mind. Be it with people or the random doubts in my mind. I stepped into 2015 with a clear mind and a clear conscience. Resolutions would be passé by now but I have a few things in mind that I want to follow and pursue in the new year. So brace yourselves, here is the mandatory to-do list for 2015.

~ Stay a workaholic. It gives me immense peace when I'm loaded and busy with work.

~ Read without a break. Finish a book and pick up the other immediately. I do not want to lose out on time.

~ Write everyday. Yes, everyday. Publishing it or not, will be a choice. But I shall write everyday.

~ Learn swimming this summer. I have been wanting to do this since ten years now, but this is the year I'm jumping into it.

~ Get back to some serious fiction writing on my blog. Poetry comes really easy now, but my stories need more importance. I have a couple of series idea coming up in my mind and I want to implement them soon.

~ Continue my book. It has been more than a year since I'm stuck with the third chapter of my own book. Time to start afresh and continue writing. By year end, I want to have a finished copy ready for publishing.

~ Do up my house all by myself. Cal and I will soon be moving out and starting to live on our own. Everything in this house will be curated by me and Cal. I want to paint all the paintings myself and stitch the cushions myself. I want to set up everything one thing at a time and in the best way possible.

~ Pursue baking seriously. It has been more than a year since I baked anything. Due to space issues at home, we had to let go off our oven and keep it packed. But once we go to our new place, I want to compensate for the last year and bake atleast once a week. I'm sure my foodie husband would be pleased.

~ Take health very seriously. I need to stop binging and work out. I want to get back to my yoga and tone down a bit.

Not too much of a list, but I'm trying to be realistic here. Hopefully I should be able to accomplish them in the next 364 days. Keeping my fingers crossed!

I want to take this opportunity to wish all my readers and my dearest blogger friends a very Happy and Prosperous New Year. May all your dreams come true and keep loving me the way you all do!